I couldn’t believe how much Justin loved this dinner. I mean, it was really good, but he LOVED it. Needless to say, I’ll be making it again soon. The quesadillas are so fresh-tasting, and I love that you don’t have to pre-cook the zucchini for the filling. It softens a little and goes perfectly with the cheese and jalapenos. The salsa is so simple, I plan on using it for snacks and with other dishes. It’s a great way to use up chipotle chiles…it always seems like recipes only call for one or two chiles, and you can only buy them by the can. This recipe is from my new favorite cookbook, Fresh Food Fast by Peter Berley. I can’t say enough good things about this cookbook…it’s beautiful, the recipes are simple but unique and flavorful, and it’s divided up by seasons. I highly recommend checking it out.
Notes: (Of course I changed the recipe.) I used half the recipe, and it made enough filling for 5 quesadillas (10 tortillas). I opted for whole wheat tortillas, and just toasted the quesadillas on a comal (cast-iron griddle) without brushing them with oil. And of course I used Colby-Jack instead of Monterey Jack cheese.
Black Bean and Zucchini Quesadillas
- 2 pounds zucchini, coarsely grated
- 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt, plus additional to taste
- 2 (15-ounce) cans black beans, drained
- 12 ounces grated Monterey Jack cheese, coarsely grated
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 1 jalapeno pepper, with seeds, finely chopped
- 8 flour tortillas (8 inches in diameter)
- Olive oil for brushing the tortillas
- Chipotle Salsa (recipe follows)
In a colander, toss together the grated zucchini and salt with your hands. Squeeze the zucchini to remove a lot of its liquid.
In a large bowl, combine the zucchini, beans, cheese, scallions, and jalapeno.
Brush 4 of the tortillas with oil on one side. Turn over the tortillas so the oiled side is on the bottom. Divide the bean mixture between the tortillas, spreading it to the edges. Top each with a plain tortilla and brush the top with oil.
Warm a large skillet over medium heat. Place a quesadilla in the pan and cook until the cheese melts and the tortillas are golden brown, about 3 minutes per side. Repeat with the remaining quesadillas. Alternatively, arrange the quesadillas on a rimmed baking sheet and broil, about 6 inches from the heat source, until the cheese melts and the quesadillas are golden brown, about 1 to 2 minutes per side. Serve with salsa.
- 5 to 6 ripe plum tomatoes, cored, seeded and diced
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1/3 cup chopped red onion
- 1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce, drained if desired, and finely chopped
- Juice of 1 lime
- Coarse salt
In a small bowl, toss together all the ingredients. Add some of the adobo sauce if you desire a hotter salsa.
Makes 4 servings.
Source: Fresh Food Fast by Peter Berley.